Manipulation of nanoparticles and biomolecules by electric field and surface tension

Yaling Liu, Kieseok Oh, John G. Bai, Cheng Ling Chang, Woonhoog Yeo, Jae Hyun Chung, Kyong Hoon Lee, Wing Kam Liu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Electric field has become one of the most widely used tools for manipulating cells, biomolecules, and nanoscale particles in microfluidic devices. This paper presents the theory, modeling, and experimental works on manipulation of nano and biomaterials by using an electric field and surface tension. Three-dimensional dynamic assembly of nanowires on various microelectrodes under dielectrophoretic force is presented with discussion on capillary action and electroosmosis effects in the manipulation. The various approaches to manipulate the small scale materials are addressed both numerically and experimentally. For successful prediction and analysis on nanoscale, a hierarchical and multiscale scheme for modeling fluid transportation in nanochannels is suggested. The results show that the combined effects of electric field and capillary action induced forces are crucial for precise control over nanoscale materials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2156-2172
Number of pages17
JournalComputer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering
Issue number25-28
StatePublished - Apr 15 2008


  • Dielectrophoretic assembly
  • Electrokinetics
  • Immersed finite element method
  • Nanochannel
  • Nanomaterials
  • Nanowires
  • Surface tension

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • Computer Science Applications


Dive into the research topics of 'Manipulation of nanoparticles and biomolecules by electric field and surface tension'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this